Trump makes his choice

May 20, 2005 by Ian Evans

When “bizarre” is used in connection with The Apprentice, it’s usually used to describe Donald Trump’s hair. But “bizarre” is the only word to use to describe the very subdued one-hour live finale of The Apprentice’s third season.

Last year was a three-hour spectacle, but this year the final tasks and initial boardroom were held in an hour-long episode last week. Rather than confronting the two finalists – Tana Goertz and Kendra Todd – directly across the boardroom table, Trump sat at one table with Carolyn, George, Bill Rancic and Kelly Perdew, Tana and Kendra were together at a second table, and the fired contestants sat in a jury box. It was like a reality TV court martial. Another strange twist: rather than have the winner choose between two projects they’d like to work on, Trump asked the two finalists which project they would choose if they won. The two projects weren’t as massive as those offered to the men, either. They had the choice of working on Miss Universe or renovating a multi-million dollar mansion in Palm Beach, Florida.

The outcome was pretty much telegraphed during last week’s episode. Tana’s task was a planning fiasco and she badmouthed her team to anyone who was nearby. Trump trashed her about that and minutes into the show told the 37-year-old Mary Kay seller that she had an uphill battle.

Tana wasn’t going quietly. She challenged every comment tossed her way, blamed the editing for not catching that she was joking about her teammates, and did a bizarre fist pumping when it came out that she suggested that the Pontiac sales tool be a circle.

Kendra, a 26-year-old real estate developer, conceded that the circle was Tana’s idea, but went on to say that while Tana and Craig slept, she pulled an all-nighter, filling that circle with important things like photos, ad copy, and specs. Okay, but would she have put it in a circle?

Needless to say, Trump chose Kendra, who’ll now head off to oversee the Florida reno job. Just before the show ended, The Donald, who looks really uncomfortable handling these live hosting gigs, made sure to plug The Apprentice 4 and the upcoming Martha Stewart-led spin-off.